Thursday, May 11, 2017

Welcome to the Frickin’ Guardians of the Galaxy

Welp…the Marvel movie franchise has done it again.

It’s awesome, grab the family and go see it.

Thank you very much, good night!

I sense some of you need more.  Fine.

Everything that worked the last time continued to work, and was built upon. It was a giant fun romp of an adventure that never took itself too seriously.

Except of course when it did.

I have a feeling (ooga chaka) Marvel being owned by Disney now has brought the “for every laugh a tear must fall” philosophy into the Marvel Universe.

And that is a wonderful thing.

Because at the core of this adventure tale of a bunch of lovable, far from perfect, space borne goofballs, is a strong heart about friendship and family.

Adding in the character of Mantis, with her empathic abilities, was mostly used for comedy, but also exposed some of the heart wrenching tragedy that these characters keep below the surface in order to maintain the “lovable, far from perfect, space borne goofballs” image needed to keep it a fun time overall.  Her dealings with Drax alone ran the full length of the emotional spectrum.

Mantis’s use of her powers, coupled with a few scenes of dialogue and interactions between characters that were insanely well written and performed generated that emotional core.  As I said, they built on what worked. 
Bringing back and expanding the roles of Yondu and Nebula through their connections to the Guardians was a big part of both the fun and the heart of the story. 
All this combined to bring the film beyond an action filled adventure to a tale that had some truly beautiful moments (between the comedy and explosions of course) that stayed with the audience long after viewing.

Any comic book movie needs villains, and the ones chosen were perfect foils for this unorthodox group of heroes.  The bad guys were excessively arrogant, condescending and full of themselves. Perfect fodder to be taken down several pegs by a group featuring a snarky space raccoon.

I truly appreciated the way Guardians Volume 2 expanded the cinematic Marvel universe, without retreading old ground.  The background of Thanos and the Infinity Stones was covered in detail in the first film. However, that thread is being shifted to future Avengers movies. Instead of travelling down that road, which would need to be a dead end to allow the other parts of Phase Three to proceed, whole different sections of the cosmic portions of the Marvel Universe were unveiled.

I’m trying to avoid spoilers, therefore all I can say about Kurt Russell is he was, by far, the perfect choice for all aspects of the role he played.  In the same vein, with the exception of not sharing screen time with Kurt to give us a Tango and Cash reunion, Stallone’s cameo was awesome and could lead to much more awesome in the future. 

Lastly in this spoiler free bit of gushing:
Best Stan Lee Cameo Ever.

Finally, a Guardians review can’t be complete without mentioning the music.  The songs chosen from Peter’s youth were as catchy and uplifting as the ones in the first film. However, in this case, the lyrics were far more connected to what was occurring on screen.  They highlighted the adventure, and raised the stakes for the gorgeous emotional moments.

Final bonus point shout out for having an opening credits scene that could have been the final battle in most super hero/ science fiction films taking place in the background while a baby tree dances around the film makers’ names.


Chris said...

Yay! Thanks for the review Jeff. Can't wait to see it.

Jeff McGinley said...

Happy to provide a valuable service. Thanx for stopping by.

Unknown said...

I saw it Saturday - thoroughly enjoyable .............. Tazerhead? ............. aaaaarrrggghhahahahahahah

Jeff McGinley said...

Thanx for sharing. The gags were definitely good enough to make this a "watch this repeatedly" film. The fact that it had heart as well moves it to a higher level.